What can make an awesome weekend getaway or a month-long adventure in your new camper from RV World even better? Bringing your four-legged friend along for endless tail-wagging fun and unconditional, always-at-your-side companionship that only your wet-nosed pooch can offer. But even though he’s ready to go anywhere with you at the nod of your head, there is a little prep work you should do to ensure that he has what he needs and loves while away from home. In return for all the wet kisses and the adoring looks he gives you with those big, soulful eyes, keep him happy and safe on the road with the following items from the ultimate checklist for RVing with your dog. You’re guaranteed a paws-itively spectacular time when you travel with a well-outfitted dog!
Collapsible food & water bowls:
Man’s best friend has to eat, right? Leave his everyday dishes at home and travel with collapsible ones made of lightweight silicone, like these ones. Not only are they durable and unbreakable, but you can even bring them along on a hike if your dog goes with you. They pack up easily into a backpack and you’ll hardly notice they’re in there. Perfect for RV travel, these bowls can handle rough roads and sharp turns, unlike ceramic ones.
Portable water bottle:
You bring along a water bottle for yourself on a hike, so why not for your best friend? Relatively new to pet stores are portable water bottles for your dog. They come in all different designs but the idea is the same: Keep your dog hydrated. Some are squeezable water bottles where the water squeezes out of the bottle and into an attached water dish on top like this Highwave AutoDogMug one (why didn’t I think of that!), while others turn upside down and dispense water into an attached canoe-shaped contraption that extends out from it like this Gulpy H2O to Go one. Or you can opt to bring along a collapsible water dish made of polyester that folds almost flat when not in use.
Travel treat tote:
Your dog is the best behaved dog in the world and deserves to be showered with treats, especially on vacation, so pack a good supply of them in a handy travel treat tote or container so you don’t have to bring along the big, bulky box or bag they’re sold in. Check out these On the Go Snack Sacks or this paw print Treat Jar.
Clip-on dispenser w/ poo bags:
What goes in must come out, so be prepared for the fun part of owning a pet—doo-doo duty! While not the most glorious part of having a pet, you can have some fun with it by carrying a bone-shaped dispenser with leash/belt clip that holds the roll of poo bags. Some even come in designer fabrics so you don’t have to sacrifice style while crouching over a pile of poop.
If your dog happens to wander into a bush and comes out covered in burrs, you’ll be glad you have a brush along so you can easily remove them.
Shampoo & towels:
Camping means lots of outdoor time, which increases the likelihood that your little friend will need a bath. If your RV has an outdoor shower, washing him up will be a cinch. My favorite dog shampoo is lavender and mint-scented Buddy Wash. It leaves him smelling beautiful and feeling oh-so-soft.
First aid kit:
You can either compile your own first aid kit, or you can buy one that’s already assembled, like this one. If putting one together yourself, include these staple first aid kit items: thermometer and water/based lubricant, dog-safe antiseptic, muzzle, absorbent gauze pads, foil emergency blanket, hydrogen peroxide (to induce vomiting if needed), ice pack, non-latex disposable gloves, tweezers, plastic eyedropper or syringe, old credit card (to remove stingers), cotton balls, styptic pencil (to stop bleeding), gauze and tape to secure it (never use human bandages), scissors to cut tape/gauze.
Bring along all medications that your dog is taking. Keep them in the bottles they came in from the vet so you have the name of the medication and dosage amount if needed.
Medical records & vet’s number:
Hopefully you won’t need these, but bring along your pet’s medical records, your vet’s contact information, and even the numbers of local vets along your route and at your destination. Store them somewhere safe and easily accessible, like inside the first aid kit or in the glove box of your car.
Reflective collar or glow stick:
A visible dog is a safe dog, so put a reflective collar on your dog or affix a glow stick to his regular collar so he’ll be easy to see in the dark.
Stake or tie-out cable:
To keep your buddy safe at your campsite, bring along a spiral stake or tie-out to secure him to your RV (or a nearby tree). To keep his cable visible in the dark, wrap some glow-in-the-dark tape around it.
Insect repelling accessories:
While not totally necessary if your dog is on a seasonal flea and tick repellant that also wards off mosquitos and other insects, insect-repelling items add another line of protection against disease-carrying insects for your buddy. FunnyFur carries everything from insect-repelling bandanas and hoodies to dog beds and blankets. For tips on how to keep your RV insect free, check out this post!
While you can just throw all of your dog’s travel items into a plastic grocery bag and call it good, nobody does that. To keep your RV clutter free and organized, consider packing his items in a small tote made just for him that has zippered pockets and is easy to clean. We like this one by Overland Dog Gear that includes two food pouches, two bowls, a placemat, and plenty of storage pockets.
All of these items can be found easily with just a quick online search, so start shopping for your precious pooch today. Just think of all the tails you’ll have to share with family and friends when you return!
Do you go RVing with your dog? If so, what are some items you wouldn’t leave home without? Share them with us in the comments below!